Dan Erlewine's Maintenance & Setup for Steel-string Acoustic Guitars

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Your guide to evaluating the condition of acoustic and resophonic guitars, and making them play their best.

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Vol. 1, DVD

Item # 5617
In stock, ready to ship!

$49.95

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Vol. 2, DVD

Item # 5618
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$49.95

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Set of 2 DVDs

Item # 5620
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$89.90

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Your guide to evaluating the condition of acoustic and resophonic guitars, and making them play their best.

If your repair experience is mostly with electric guitars, these DVDs will show you how to apply your skills to flattops and resophonics. If you specialize in acoustics, this information is essential.

Each DVD is 2 hours. Sold individually or SAVE when you buy the set of both DVDs.

Maintenance & Setup for Steel-string Acoustic Guitars Vol. 1









"If acoustic setup makes you nervous, this DVD will give you the information and confidence you need."—Dan

The focus of this DVD
Evaluating the condition of your acoustic or resophonic guitar, and getting the most out of it.

Information covered
Flattop Acoustic Guitars:
  • Installing strings correctly on the inside of your guitar: understanding the relationship between the bridge reinforcing plate's ("bridge pad") condition and good tone, playability and a guitar's longevity
  • What to do about bridge and bridge pad problems
  • Structural integrity checklist. Prevention is the best cure, so learn what to look for inside your guitar
  • The most common problems with vintage flattops
  • Optimum action setups for different playing styles
  • Good nut and saddle height
  • When does a neck need to be re-set?
  • When does a bridge need to be replaced?
Pro setups
Understand the setups of these professional players, and hear the results
  • Roy Bookbinder shows why he likes his Recording King and Washburn De-Luxe (both made by Gibson in the 30s and 40s)
  • JD Hutchison shows how he gets his '52 Martin D-28 to keep up with "the boys the Telecasters and steel guitars"
  • Paul Geremia details the setups of both his Stella 12-String and Gibson J-35 - Two different setups for two different playing styles
  • Jorma Kaukonen details his road guitar, a Gibson acoustic electric as well as his "pure" (unamplified) studio guitar - a Gibson Advanced Jumbo

Maintenance & Setup for Steel-string Acoustic Guitars Vol. 2








"If acoustic setup makes you nervous, this DVD will give you the information and confidence you need."—Dan

The focus of this DVD
Evaluating the condition of your acoustic or resophonic guitar, and getting the most out of it.

Information covered
Flattop Acoustic Guitars (cont.):
  • Modern acoustic/electric amplification, effects, sound equipment and guitar setup featuring Bill Dutcher
  • Cleaning a dirty guitar
  • A "microbuilder's" approach to setting up new guitars (with Bryan Galloup)
Archtop Setup:
  • Setting up a 1957 Gibson L-5 archtop jazz guitar
  • Fitting an archtop bridge
National and other brands of metal-bodied guitars:
  • Disassembly, cleanup, and reassembly
  • Getting the proper down-pressure on the cone
  • Shaping the saddle
  • Custom tone options
  • Common action settings
Wood-bodied resophonics:
(Guitars played on your lap, Dobro-style, with a high nut and saddle)
  • Disassembly, cleanup, and reassembly
  • Seating the cone in the well
  • Fitting the spider bridge to the cone
  • Cutting the bridge saddle
  • Common action settings
Pro setups:
Understand the setups of these professional players, and hear the results
  • Modern acoustic/electric amplification, effects, sound equipment and guitar setup featuring Bill Dutcher
  • Bluegrass guitar setups with Todd Sams
  • Playing a metal resophonic finger-style (no slide) with Del Rey - the "Memphis Minnie" of the new millennium. Del understands her setup, and describes it well
  • "Lap-steel" setup with Kelly Joe Phelps: a new approach to playing slide on a flattop guitar set up for slide (different than the Dobro)
  • Preferred setup for for "big band" chord backup with Bob Montalto
Also see:


Product Instructions

About Dan Erlewine's New Repair Videos

A brief introduction to Dan Erlewine and his new instructional repair videos.

Ratings & Reviews

Dan Erlewine's Maintenance & Setup for Steel-string Acoustic Guitars

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  • Based on 6 Reviews
Write a review

Setup for Steel -String Acoustic Guitars

By string bender from Fleming Island,Fl
(Customer's Reviews) Sunday, April 27, 2014


I used to not pay much attention to acoustic guitars when I purchased them, they just had to play and look good. But now I not only can setup my acoustic, I know what to look for when evaluating a new purchase. A good addition to any DIY Libary.

Maintenance DVD

By Joemac from Anola, MB, CA
(Customer's Reviews) Wednesday, December 11, 2013


This DVD is really useful. I've been getting my information on resonator guitars from the National and other web sites, and this Dan Erlewine DVD gives a whole different perspective and far more detail on setting up a resonator guitar. If I had set up my Johnson without reviewing this DVD I'd have gotten it wrong. Thank you Mr. Erlewine!

Joe MacLeod, Manitoba, CA

Dan's Maintenance and setup

By sneauxman from Aurora, CO
(Customer's Reviews) Wednesday, October 16, 2013


Detailed and very instructive. The best as always from Dan.

Clear, Concise, Fun

By Scott McMillin from memphis, tn
(Customer's Reviews) Wednesday, April 04, 2012


Watching Dan do various setups on different instruments really brings into focus the ideas I have read about in books. Well worth the investment.

good starting point

By MoorMusic from Switzerland
(Customer's Reviews) Wednesday, December 28, 2011


These are a great starting point for beginners. There is great information about the inside of a guitar and all the things that can be wrong that you don't see from the outside. I especially like the idea of the transparent guitar.

A Missed Opportunity

By Stan Priddy from hesperia, CA
(Customer's Reviews) Sunday, November 13, 2011


Very disappointed. I am a big fan of Dan Erlewines, but this DVD should have really been informative considering the price, but it provides little in the way of useful info.
If you have no knowledge at all about setting up your guitars you might learn something, but to the average guitar player, you won't get much from this DVD. Should have spent more time on instruction and education then those musical interludes, then you could have got everything on one disc, but maybe that was the point.

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